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Breaking Madden 2: Break Harder
September 3, 2014 2:39 PM   Subscribe

The 2014 NFL season begins tomorrow, and with it comes the return of MeFi Favorite Jon Bois' weekly quest to destroy the laws of God, man and video-game football, Breaking Madden. The first installment, in which he seeks to record 201 sacks in a single game with Houston Texans rookie Jadeveon Clowney, is already up. Breaking Madden previously. His similar basketball series, NBA Y2K.
posted by Holy Zarquon's Singing Fish (37 comments total) 23 users marked this as a favorite

 
BEEFTANK FOR IOC PRESIDENT!
posted by blue_beetle at 2:40 PM on September 3 [2 favorites]


I want to see a whole game where he plays against tiny linebackers
posted by T.D. Strange at 2:42 PM on September 3 [4 favorites]


I don't really follow football. Nothing against it, it just isn't my thing. The one reason I was happy for football season to start was this column.
posted by Twain Device at 2:46 PM on September 3 [7 favorites]


Metafilter gets a shout out this week, as we find out that the score isn't the only quantity that Madden devotes remarkably few bits to.
posted by wotsac at 2:48 PM on September 3 [2 favorites]


I'm really disappointed in the sportsmanship Jadaveon Clowney is showing here. 100+ sacks in the game and you're still doing a sack dance every time? What a disgrace to the sport of Football, the National Football League, and young children who look up to Football players as positive examples in their lives.

Jadaveon Clowney? More like Badaveon Frowney!
posted by Copronymus at 2:56 PM on September 3 [5 favorites]


Also don't forget when he created a hockey team out of the Miami Heat and ended up with headless hockey players.
posted by barchan at 3:08 PM on September 3 [3 favorites]


The best thing is that the Washington NFL Team's helmets have no racist caricature on them; that's a setting in Madden, I guess?
posted by Homeboy Trouble at 3:14 PM on September 3 [2 favorites]


I want tiny linebacker and BEEFTANK on the same team. I want tiny linebacker riding on BEEFTANK's shoulder. I want them having glorious football and nonfootball adventures.

when are yuletide signups open
posted by elizardbits at 3:23 PM on September 3 [4 favorites]


This seems like a good place to mention Jon Bois' seminal Tim Tebow CFL Chronicles, one of the best pieces of literature the Internet has ever devised (and a work well deserving of its own FPP). Set aside an hour or two and read the whole thing. You'll be glad you did.
posted by Itaxpica at 3:31 PM on September 3 [4 favorites]


Scratch that, we DO have a previous CFL chronicles FPP. Go and read it.
posted by Itaxpica at 3:32 PM on September 3 [2 favorites]


Oh, holy cats, this did not disappoint. Jon Bois is approaching "national treasure" territory.
posted by Joey Michaels at 3:46 PM on September 3 [1 favorite]


Oh God the GIF of Jerrell Powe.
posted by Navelgazer at 3:51 PM on September 3 [2 favorites]


Also worth noting that he never mentions the name of the Washington football team.
posted by Navelgazer at 3:58 PM on September 3 [3 favorites]


He quoted my comment about storing the score in a byte! That's going on the resume.
posted by JHarris at 4:02 PM on September 3 [14 favorites]


My phone now autocompletes BEEFTANK (in allcaps) from multiple discussions about Breaking Madden with friends.

I really hope he does something with tinylinebacker.

elizardbits, I now ship BEEFTANK/tinylinebacker, I hope you're happy.

Alternately, BEEFTANK/tinylinebacker 2016!
posted by Tknophobia at 4:02 PM on September 3 [3 favorites]


Beeftank/tinylinebacker on a road trip to find the heart of America.
posted by drezdn at 4:11 PM on September 3 [8 favorites]


Also, poor RGIII.
posted by drezdn at 4:11 PM on September 3


So, 5 bits for sacks, and 6 bits for tackles? That's even more bizarre. They must have been using bit fields for storing those values. That's some high memory constraints. I could only see using them on the original platforms Madden was on, like the Genesis and the Apple II.
posted by zabuni at 4:12 PM on September 3 [1 favorite]


My phone now autocompletes BEEFTANK (in allcaps) from multiple discussions about Breaking Madden with friends.

My grocery list accidentally included beeftank tomatoes the other day except I wrote it with an actual pen and paper so I have no excuse.

sob
posted by elizardbits at 4:20 PM on September 3 [18 favorites]


I was just remarking that with a friend zabuni. It must be doing bit packing behind the scenes. It's not even 127 that's the limit, that could be understandable if it was a signed byte, but it's 63 and 31. They're not coding on Atari 2600s anymore dammit!
posted by JHarris at 4:21 PM on September 3


zabuni: "So, 5 bits for sacks, and 6 bits for tackles? That's even more bizarre. They must have been using bit fields for storing those values. That's some high memory constraints. I could only see using them on the original platforms Madden was on, like the Genesis and the Apple II."

Madden 2015 has a long, dark history. Inside its inmost code, there's a tiny copy of snes9x, linked to a tiny virtual display, used only in memory, never shown to the user. This arrangement has been used to drive every version of Madden since John Madden Football 97, although the emulator then was a custom job written (poorly) by EA.
posted by boo_radley at 4:40 PM on September 3 [12 favorites]


They're not coding on Atari 2600s anymore dammit!

Which brings up another point. Doing C bit stuffing operations can have wildly different effects depending on the operating system, CPU, and compiler, unless you're careful. Madden must have been ported to more of these than any other commercial software I can think of. x86, z80, 6502, 68000, ARM, MIPS, amd64, and more custom os's and tool chains for the various enivornments that consoles had.

The amount of custom hacks that this has to support is probably astounding. It is probably less a piece of source code now, and more of an elder god. I imagine that the reason they don't update the code is that the person who last tried was consumed in a particularly messy fashion.
posted by zabuni at 5:05 PM on September 3 [6 favorites]


Yeah, the last time they tried overhauling the code, John Madden was eaten by an invisible beast in front of dozens of witnesses, all of whom reported a strange scent of fish and locker room.
posted by Pope Guilty at 6:31 PM on September 3 [1 favorite]


I didn't appreciate last year the fact that the stories Bois gets from his Twitter followers are perhaps the best part of this column.
posted by ob1quixote at 7:37 PM on September 3 [1 favorite]


Beeftank/tinylinebacker on a road trip to find the heart of America.

Hold me closer, tiny linebacker,
Count the headlights on the highway.
posted by A dead Quaker at 8:08 PM on September 3 [4 favorites]


Except I'm pretty sure he's a left tackle or maybe a center, not a linebacker...
posted by A dead Quaker at 8:10 PM on September 3 [1 favorite]




IDECAF (I Don't Even Care About Football), and that Tebow/CFL piece was a thing of beauty and a joy forever.
posted by Halloween Jack at 9:00 PM on September 3




So, 5 bits for sacks, and 6 bits for tackles? That's even more bizarre. They must have been using bit fields for storing those values. That's some high memory constraints. I could only see using them on the original platforms Madden was on, like the Genesis and the Apple II.

EA has long been accused by its critics of simply tweaking the previous year's code and calling it a brand new game. This seems to be at least true for the coding for the stats.
posted by dances with hamsters at 4:51 AM on September 4


I think that EA adopted an MVC pattern for the game where the View is a 3D engine, the Controller is the input manager, and the Model is an SNES emulator that they just read/write values into memory locations within it. That would be some solid design there.
posted by plinth at 7:17 AM on September 4 [2 favorites]


Did anyone figure out what the Lovecraftian thing Madden 2013 left on the 50-yard-line that time was? It looks like a bent and twisted player, but with a second, naked torso extending out of the top of its head. Very striking and sanity eroding. What caused it?
posted by JHarris at 12:34 AM on September 5 [1 favorite]


EA.
posted by Pope Guilty at 2:26 AM on September 5 [2 favorites]


EA has set up a Madden GIFerator thingie, so I took the liberty of making a few GIFs based on some MeFi memes and various inside jokes and what-not.
posted by tonycpsu at 9:32 AM on September 5 [2 favorites]


And a couple more, because why not.
posted by tonycpsu at 9:51 AM on September 5 [2 favorites]




It is the best thing since the jaeger generator last year.
posted by poffin boffin at 10:54 AM on September 9


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